THE EIGHTEEN CENTURY
James II´s son unable to occupy the throne because he wasn´t willing to alter his religion, Catholicism.
George I King of England. He appoints Stanhope as his chief minister. In 1746 Septennial Asct is passed (Parliament elected every 7 years).
South Sea Bubble Scandal: ssco founded to trade with Spanish colonies in America. The Co took over the National Debt so gvt would support the company and people would buy the stock. Prices rise. Crash. Stanhope resigns.
George appoints Walpole as his new minister and leaves gvt in his hands (not interested in English affairs) Beginning of the Cabinet system of gvt. Walpole remains in power for 20 years because love affair with the king and also bribes the Parliament by means of patronage Power. To make sure Wighs win all elections the King appoints Duke of Newcastle to Ministry.
George II gained by Walpole by rising the Civil List.
Relations with Spain start deteriorating (violation of trade treaties on both sides). Jenkin´s severed ear causes two reactions in Parliament: Walpole wants no war (meant also war with France) but most members do (speacially group of Commons, the Patriots, led by William Pitt). War of Jenkin´s Ear (England lost)
War of the Austrian Succesion: Charles VI dies naming his daughter Maria Theresa as his successor; Frederic of Prussia disagrees and seizes Silesia. As Prussia´s Hanover´s neighbour George desperated though Walpole convinces him not to declare war but to give money to Mª Theresa to pay mercenaries. 1742 France enters the war on Prussia´s side, George declares war and commands his army winning a battle over France. Walpole had resigned so Pelham new minister. Things bad for England. 1748 end of war by Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle. Patriots protest that George and Pelham only concerned about continental affairs and uncare of commercial expansion. Pelham dies. George doesn´t appoint Pitt because opposed him in war. France expands trade, harmful to English merchants. Parliament forces George to appoint Pitt. Frrance controlled vast areas in North America, West Indies, West Africa and India. England already controled areas in the Caribbean, in West Africa in India and in the mediterranean. William Pitt relied on the acquisition of a vast overseas empire to make England a world power, which he succeeded to do in five years.
Beginning of 7 yearrs war: France attacks English overseas possessions; Pitt renews war against France. In North America the English seized Louisbourg, french fortress, and french cut off from Mississippi valley. In India French defeated at the battle of Plassey. In Africa England seized Dakar and Senegal (won trrade). In west Indies English captured Guadalupe and martinique.
George III first hanoverian really British; thought that peace should be signed. Pitt now unpopular politician and he resigns. End of war (Peace of Paris, 1763). Bute new minister, returns Guadalupe, Martinique, Dakar and french settlements in India to France.. George wants to regain control over gvt. Bute resigns. George appoints Greenville the Stamper (introduced the Stamp Act which caused turmoil and had to resign). New minister Duke of Grafton (appointed by the King so a regression for they were already appointed by H of Commons). George wants to recover the power of the crown which did by resuming in his hand the Royal Patronage. Burke against it cos he thought that it was people who had to decide through their epresentatives (the Commons). Lord North appointed (both king and Parliament liked him) remained in office for 12 years.
1789 things go bad because american colonies became consciouss of their power, rebelling against Britain rule and defeatin it(North forced to resign by Parliament in spite of enjoying the king´s confidence. Last prime minister appointed by king). Pitt´s son appointed. Beginning of French revolution greeted with joy by English. Fox came forward in Parliament to support the cause of the rebels in France in spite of the execution of the King considering the principles of the revolution praise worthy, specialle liberty and the protection of people against tyranny. Parliament divided into Pitt´s conservative Whigs and Fox´s radical Whigs. When events deteriorated in France Britain declared war on France, radical whigs persecuted.
George insane so put in prison by his son Prince George (Prince Regent). Prince unpopular. He and his wife Caroline of Brunswick hated each other, she separates and goes to Italy. George III dies and George IV very unpopular: sex, food, drink, opium.. Tory party divided into ultraconservatives and liberal.
William IV (George´s brother). Also drinks and sex. Fought in the navy in the war of American Independence. Forms his gvt with Whigs cos tories divided.
Political system unfair because urban population unepresented in Parliament. Landed classes held power, manufacturing classes unrepesented. Middle classes want reforms. Parliamentary Reform Bill passes Commons but not Lords. Earl Grey, leader of the Whigs, asks the King to create 50 new peers. Finally accepted and changes epresentation in England. Middle classes influenced by Utilitarianism (Benham. An action is right if it tends to promote the greatest happiness for the greatest number. Also role of gvt limited to preserve order and protect property), wanted social reforms as well as political: change of System of assistance to the poor. Parliament passes a poor law: no wage supplement and hard conditions in working houses (negative side of ut). Consequences ut: suppression of many import and export duties and repeal of corn laws ( grain price sunk because it could now be imported).
Queen Victoria was William´s niece.Gvt changes from Whigs to Tories after the economic depression. Tories leader Peel believed in free trade. Followin Smith, he believed that a nation´s wealth depended on its capacity to produce goods, not in its amount of bullion. He reduced custom duties and gave a boost to economy. Peel couldn´t touch the corn laws (middle classes and poor against them) because he was a tory and they had been passed by his party. He finally repeals them because he thinks it´s best for the country. Good for England but tories divided into Peelites and Protectionists. Which unite with Whigs to beat Peel. Peel dies and is replaced by Gladstone. Viscount Palmerstone Prime minister, mainly interested in foreign policy-
1848 popular risings in France, Austria an Germany, threatening European absolutism and demandin limited monarchies. Palmerston suppored those rebels and italian revvolutionaries so Victoria and husband furious with them, because they were related to European royal families and thought monarch should dictate foreign policy.
Crimean war: triple alliance (Britain, France and Turkey) versus Russia. Brtain and France besieged Sebastopol and eventually seized it.
The working class was unrepresented in Parliament and organised meetings for Parliament reform. After a better period a Reform Act was passed but didn´t fulfill expectations. When poor law rectified situation unbearable. Chartism: working class movement leaded by Lovett; program: The People´s Charter, demanding annual Parliament, Universal manhood suffrage, vote by secret ballot, no property qualifications to be MP, payment of members and equal electoral districts (all hav been achieved except first). Chartist convention to organize a petition to the House of Commons demanding all six points. Failure and chartism disappears. 1856 mass meeting called Hyde Park Riot demanding Parliament reform make politicians see that reform is inevitable. Disraeli appointed (Palerston died). Formation of acual liberal and conservative parties: the liberal leaded by Gladstone united Peelites and Whigs; Conservative leaded by Disralei formed by Protectionists. Disraeli introduces a Reform Bill (Household Suffrage Bill) enfranchising the property qualifications to ten and twelve pounds, and also doubling electorate. This made politic parties change from an elite of nobles to national organisations depending on mass support. No mor bribing or Royal Patronage (extension of franchise and introduction of secret ballot). Beginning of political rallies. Monarchy shouldn´t interfere with party programs because they were elected by people (reduction of monarch role: only ratified result of elections). Victoria unwilling to be a democratic monarch, though she made monarchy a respectful institution, but never again a political power.
Gladston improved education of lower classes and based appointments to the Civil Service on competitive examination. Also legalized trade unions and made ballot secret. Next elections won by Disraeli, wanted to stop Russian expansionism (threat to the balance of power and to British possessions in far East) He buyed shares of the Suez Chanel Co (shortest way between England and India). Gladston minister again passed 3rd Reform Bill: widened franchise so rural workers (need of permanent home) and divided the country into single members constituencies. He introduced the irish Home Rule (wanted to take Ireland out of British Politics). Fenian Brotherhood wanted independance for Ireland.
Marx urged poor to rise against middle classes. English poor favoured a moderate form of socialism, aiming to a better life without revolution. Fabian society: young radical British intellectuals who wanted to transform society through practical advise to men in power improving poor´s life but respection existing intitutions. Socialism needed the financial support of Trade Unions, which for a long time weren´t interested..
1890´s creation of labour Party, first devoted to the interests of labourers.
Edward VII had less influence over the state than his mother. Working classes wnated reforms. Liberal won elections: an act granting compensations for workers; old age pensionists act; minimum wage in certain industries; establishment of labour exchanges (helped poor find new jobs). Most of this work of David Lloyd George, who thought that the power of the House of Lords should be restricted.
George V. LG increase the income tax and duties on luxury. Lord furious. Gvt wanted king to create new peers supporting budget. Result: Act of Parliament: Money Bills turned law after passed Commons (1 month): other bills also law by passin 3 consecutive sessions: legal life of Parliament reduced to 5 years. Campaign pro-women suffrage which didn´t succeed until end WWI. During WWI liberal prime minister Asquith had to resign (not strong enough) and Lloyd George succeedd him; he though that English should mobilize. Requisited some factories (so controlled production and goods) 1916 Military service act. After war franchise extended to women over 30 and all men over 21. Plural voting restricted, War ended. General election cos Parliament outlived its term, electorated had doubled, gvt needed popular support to negotiate peace settlement. Coalition between conservatives and LG liberals. LG leader of coalition and Labour was chief opposite party.(different social class for the 1st time). During coalition Treaty of Versalles signed. Economic inestability. Miner suffer. LG had to resign cos conservatives dissolve coalition. Next election won by conservatives but gvt formed by coalition labour&LG liberals (1st labour gvt ever). Prime Minister Mc Donald needed liberal support; he wnated GB to become closer to Soviet Union and established commercial relations with tehe USSR. Criticism. Conservatives back into office. Baldwin Pirme Minister; difficult moment: unemployement, low demand of british exports, high tariffs to face import quotas, old industries obsolete, overevaluation of the pound...Bladwin proposed two measures against unemployement: foster foreign trade and a policy of wage cuts. Workers unhappy, Trade Union Congress, Nation paralised, so no cuts but Bladwins position deteriorated.
1929 Labour party wins election for 1st time. Mc Donald PM again. Program to reduce unemployement, but Britain involved in world depression (crash of NY stock market) so foreign trade decreased. Mac Donald appoint a commitee of experts to avoid major crisis and solve problem, issued a report calling for reduction of benefits. Refusal. Coalition between conservatives and liberals.
Keynes: claims that wage cuts are no good, but the key to recovery was an increase in peoples ability to consumption but conservatives refused to fight unemployement like this.
Edward VII had a mistress and Baldwin tried to persuade him to end the relationship but didn´t want to so he abdicated.
|Enviado por:||Marta Fontes|